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It is better
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the web than
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not know why

John Sumser

is more
it seems.
John Gall


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(October 28, 2003) - This long look at the economics of the workforce was prompted by a desire to question our long held opinions about the coming labor shortage. So far, it looks like we've discovered a major dissonance in the market. Hiring authorities are radically understating the number of job openings in their organizations. According to the BLS numbers, it looks like a 40% to 50% delta.

So far, we've looked at the details of the 'demand' side of the equation. Unless there is a protracted labor shortage, our industry will always run on the demand side of the equation. Demand (openings) drives job posting volume. Another form of demand (actual hiring) drives ATS usage. Any support tech from an ATS company will tell you that the ATS is only fully utilized when both forms of demand are in synch at the start of the hiring process.

Let's quickly summarize the demand side. You'll remember this table. It summarizes average monthly activity.

    Average Monthly 000s
Hirings Openings Separations
2001 4,180.83 3,256.92 4,333.00
2002 3,794.08 2,537.58 3,878.58
2003 3,738.43 2,480.14 3,525.29

In annual terms, that means:

    Annual Totals
Hirings Openings Separations
2001 50,170,000 39,083,000 51,996,000
2002 45,529,000 30,451,000 46,543,000

thru 7/31/2003

26,169,000 17,361,000 24,677,000

We used the full numbers (not 000s) in the annual table for emphasis. Even though they are radically understated, we have no confidence that anything like all of the openings have been harvested as job ads.

Our look at Demand shows a huge market opportunity.

John Sumser

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Materials written by John Sumser © TwoColorHat. All Rights Reserved.
Mill Valley, CA 94941

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